- All indications point to the Bucs moving on from five-year starter Jameis Winston.
The reason for backing Tampa Bay.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished the regular season with a (7-9) record despite having a quarterback who threw an NFL-record 30 interceptions - seven of which were pick-sixes.
Bucs head coach Bruce Arians has openly spoken about the struggle to win with a quarterback turning the ball over that frequently, and has been vocal about Winston ideally not returning to Tampa Bay.
With that said, who better to bring in to get the job done than Bridgewater? Bridgewater has thrown only 25 interceptions in his five-year career compared to Winston’s 88 interceptions over that same span of years.
With the big play wide receiver weapons of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, and a stout defense, Bridgewater’s game manager style of play is the perfect fit. The Bucs sit as the frontrunners to land him at +200 and is my best bet.
- Bridgewater played in 14 games over the last two seasons with Saints.
The reason for backing New Orleans.
The Saints seemed to be in serious trouble at the beginning of the season after veteran franchise quarterback Drew Brees went down with a thumb injury. Yet, Bridgewater rose to the occasion and essentially saved the season.
Bridgewater made five starts for the Saints and went a perfect (5-0). Although he didn’t necessarily dazzle, he got the job done with an efficient 68 completion percentage for 1,384 passing yards, nine touchdowns and two interceptions.
Not having the Saints as my best bet was a tough call, especially with news that New Orleans is open to re-signing Bridgewater. However, the Saints just placed a first-round tender on utility backup quarterback Taysom Hill which shows a strong commitment to keep him there. The quarterback room fit all three last season, but I’m not positive Bridgewater would want to do that yet again.
- Quarterback Philip Rivers left the Chargers after 16 seasons as starting quarterback.
The reason for backing Los Angeles.
For similar reasons as Tampa Bay, the Chargers are looking for much more efficiency from the quarterback position. Longtime franchise quarterback Philip Rivers is set to leave Los Angeles after throwing the second most interceptions of his career with 20.
The Chargers are a legitimate landing spot for Bridgewater, but there is a bigger fish in the free agent market that has also been linked to Los Angeles - and that’s Tom Brady. Brady’s free agent decision will most likely send a domino effect throughout the NFL for teams with a need for a quarterback.
Bridgewater’s efficiency fits what the Chargers are looking for, and with the odds at +700, the longshot isn’t necessarily too far-fetched from happening.